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Bounce rate. As a digital marketer looking either to drive more traffic to your website or increase conversions on landing pages, bounce rate is one of your most important metrics.
You worked hard to drive visitors to your pages – the least they could do is stick around!
If you’re looking at Google Analytics and seeing numbers that look a little scary, and struggling to think through the best steps to take, this article is for you. These resources have been hand-picked to help you get a better handle on bounce rate and how you can improve your metrics.
1. Don Schindler, How to Fix a High Bounce Rate on Your Website
If you have more visitors than you’d like bouncing away from your site, it can be frustrating trying to uncover exactly what’s turning them off.
In this post, Don outlines three leading causes of high bounce rates – technical issues, content issues, and design issues – and offers recommendations for improvement.
2. Kissmetrics, Bounce Rate Demystified [Infographic]
All bounce rates are not created equal. In order to assess if your bounce rate is good or bad, you’ll need a little more context on expectations and norms for your industry and use case.
This infographic from Kissmetrics provides a clear definition of bounce rate, benchmarks for different types of websites, and tips for reducing bounce rate on your pages.
3. Kissmetrics, What You Can Learn from Bounce Rate & How to Improve It
Paired with the above infographic, Kissmetrics offers just about everything you need to know about bounce rate. This post uncovers the hidden messages in your bounce rate metrics – from which referrer sites are most valuable to which keywords to target.
4. Blast Analytics & Marketing, What is Bounce Rate? Avoid a Common Pitfall
Kayden Kelly of Blast Analytics & Marketing gives us a deep dive into the keys to understanding bounce rate: from bounce rate vs. exit rate to how to sift through Google Analytics and find the right report. This article contains just about everything you could want to know about bounce rate – highly recommend taking a look.
5. Neil Patel, How to Cut Your Bounce Rate in Half with Interactive Content
Interactive content is a powerful tool to capture visitor attention and guide them to experience additional content within your domain.
6. The Readability Test Tool The Free Readability Test Tool - Readable
The readability of your website can be a major factor in the likelihood that your visitors stick around.
Most visitors to your site are probably skimmers, who take a quick glance at your header text, images, and bullet points before deciding to stay and read your content. Making your content more readable, using a tool like the Readability Test Tool, will provide a better user experience to your audience who are more likely to hang out and keep reading.
7. Optimize Smart: 11 Powerful Methods to Reduce Bounce Rate in Google Analytics
Himanshu Sharma of Optimize Smart starts off by reminding us why we should care about bounce rate: it’s an indicator of the content relevance on your website. “If site entrance pages are not relevant to your visitors then you can’t expect any conversion, sales or leads. Your whole purpose of setting up a website has no commercial value.”
Optimize Smart offers 11 tactics to try if your bounce rate isn’t where you’d like it to be – some common sense, some more off-the-beaten-path.
8. Inc.com, Less Is More: Simple Web Design and Bounce Rates
What does how your website looks have to do with whether someone stays to consume your content? It turns out, a lot.
This article in Inc.com recommends five strategies for improving the design of your website to encourage your visitors to remain engaged. From responsive design to intuitive navigation, the design of your website plays a huge role in reducing bounce rate.
Take a look and see what tweaks you could put in place that might make a difference today.
9. Yum Yum Videos, 3 Reasons Why Animated Explainer Videos Reduce Bounce Rate
I love this article not just because it gives readers a few great examples for experimenting with video for bounce rate, but also because it has superheroes.
If you haven’t thought about engaging ways to keep visitors on your website, take a look at video.
10. First Page Sage, What's A Good Bounce Rate For A B2B Site?
If you’re a B2B marketer, chances are you don’t just want to know about bounce rate – you want to know how your bounce rate compares to your peers.
In this article, Evan Bailyn recommends a target bounce rate for B2B website of between 25-55%. Any lower than 25%, Evan says, might mean the only visitors to your site and your employees and existing customers. If you’re marketing your site well, you’ll be bound to attract some people that are interested and others that are not.
“Marketing is a numbers game that invites many and hopes to convert few; it is not a hand-selected dinner party.”
So don’t obsess about getting a bounce rate of zero. Focus on lowering bounce rate in the areas that count, and accept that you can’t please everyone.
11. Elite Strategies, SEO Case Study: Decreased Bounce Rate by 55%, Doubled Traffic
This case study comes from SEO and web design firm Elite Strategies, and outlines how making simple adjustments to the homepage for their client resulted in dramatic reduction in bounce rate (as well as increases in organic search traffic).
This story makes an argument for the impact of user experience and expectations in attracting visitors to your site. Presenting a beautiful, intuitive, well-designed interface gives you a much better chance of striking a chord in the copy.
This awesomely-in-depth article from Ted Karczewski of the Content Standard (TCS) covers how Skyword approached assessing and improving their web metrics during the relaunch of TCS.
Ted goes into how he and his team looked at their content metrics during the relaunch, noticed some interesting changes, and took action to meet their goals. Great action-oriented tips in here you could put in place in your own site to see results.
13. Venture Harbour, 19 Simple Tips to Reduce Your Website’s Bounce Rate Today
This piece from Venture Harbour does exactly what the title says: provides a raft of tips to try to reduce your bounce rate. I appreciated how Venture Harbour covers some of the obvious steps like improving page loading speed alongside more out-of-the-box recommendations, like making the most of your 404 page.
Marcus also peppers in examples from his own SEO background. These examples add weight to the tips and show readers how they could apply them to their own site. Super helpful!
BONUS: Bounce rate is not always what it seems – this post from Analytics Ninja offers a more nuanced take on how digital marketers should think about bounce rate.
Analytics Ninja - Google Analytics Bounce Rate (Actually) Demystified
The Ninja argues marketers might be spending too much time worrying about reducing bounce rate, when that might not be the most helpful metric. “A measure of success for content sites is not necessarily if the reader bounces or not, but whether or not they read the article and (more importantly) come back.”
Consider your goals for your website: are you looking for better conversion or more time on site? If the latter, bounce rate might not be such a big deal for you. If the former, you’ll want to focus extra attention on reducing bounces from all your web pages and especially your landing pages.
It can seem like a mystery: why are my visitors leaving? By digging into the articles above and carefully assessing your analytics, you should be on the right path to identifying areas for improvement and putting a plan in place.